From making and mixing to sharing and selling - your phone can make you a rockstar.
We recently sampled a cross-section of the most interesting music-creation apps going down well with music-makers worldwide. Our conclusion: whether you're a professional musician, an enthusiastic amateur or a total novice, your phone has plenty of ways to help you turn your creativity up to 11. But don't just take our word for it, try these apps below...
Making tracks: Apps for creating new music.
Mogees (mogees.co.uk) is an intriguing app that began life as a Kickstarter campaign. It comprises a hardware "listener" device, which you place against any surface. The device connects to your phone and then records the sound being made by that surface, essentially allowing you to turn the noise of any object in your surroundings into music. The Pro version (US$129.99) can connect to a range of audio interfaces and music gear. The Play version ($64.99), meanwhile, comes with a sensor as well as a range of games and apps for aiding creativity. Each purchase comes with an iOS and Android app.
Auxy (iOS only)is an award-winning music studio for iPhone and iPad. At its core, Auxy is a typical loop-based song builder, which lets you lay out rhythm patterns and melody samples on a grid. Where Auxy differs from the pack is its minimalist design (it won an Apple Design award in 2016), which makes building a song not only easier, but also more beautiful. Another boon for Auxy users is the support for 3D Touch on iPhone 6S and 6S Plus. This makes it easy to mess around with loops – simply pressing on the loop makes the app jump to the editing interface.
8Stem (iOS only) allows you to take songs apart and put them back together. A simple way to remix music, simply download a song, add effects or a new bass line – even change the vocals to your own. Your finished product can be shared to social media, all in a few taps, so your friends can heap praise (or ridicule) upon you as appropriate.
Synergise your sound: Sharing and collaborating.
Bandlab (Web, iOS, Android) is a fantastic tool for professional music creators seeking creative exchange. The cloud-based platform allows you to record your music (no matter what instrument you're using), mix and master it within the app, then share the master with record labels and other musicians, who can listen, collaborate and offer feedback.
Crossfader (iOS only) promises to be the mobile DJ system that’s so simple even your grandma could use it. But, aside from its mixing capabilities, it’s also a fully-fledged social network. After you’ve created your tunes you can broadcast them live, with any other user in the world able to tune in and listen. Aside from live performances, Crossfader also offers real-time discussions with professional DJs, feedback on album art and the opportunity to make friends and collaborate on tracks.
Pacemaker 2.0 (iOS only) is iOS’ only mixtape creation app. It lets you create and share your mixtapes with Spotify streams, as well as a ream of effects such as reverb, loop and Hi-Lo, to make a mix shareable with friends or the whole Pacemaker community. (You’ll need a Spotify account to stream music.)
That's a rap: Create and locate lyrics.
RapChat (iOS only) lets you create new rhymes and showcase your best raps. Drop a freestyle, or alternatively use the notepad tool to jot down a work in progress. After you’ve recorded your rap, share it on social media through the app, or alternatively set up a Rapchat profile and showcase your work to other users. You might even make it to the trending chart of top rappers, which could see your work exposed to hundreds of thousands of hip-hop fans.
Lyrically (Android and iOS) grants access to the lyrics of over a million songs, and is a great accessory for the pocket of any cover musician. Lyrically even has the ability to identify the track you're playing and bring up the lyrics automatically. Now you're ready for any request (or any moment of memory blank) –- never mumble through a line again!
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